Stem Cell Regenerative Therapy
Stem Cell Therapy
At Mountain View Pain Center, our physicians are double-board certified leaders in pain management and regenerative therapies. We are committed to using the most cutting-edge and advanced technologies in the field of regenerative medicine to safely and effectively treat chronic pain conditions in the spine and joints through a distinguished comprehensive treatment approach that has resulted in national and international recognition. These treatments are non-surgical options which use the body’s natural growth factors and stem cells to restore degenerative tissue, improve mobility, and reduce pain and inflammation. Stem cells are the future of medical care, and our comprehensive and customized treatment approach has positioned us at the forefront of this exciting new field of medicine.
What are Stem Cells?
Stem cells have the remarkable ability to develop into any type of cell in the body and have the distinct ability to replenish other cells and tissues indefinitely. When a stem cell divides, it has the potential to remain as an undifferentiated stem cell, or under certain physiological conditions, it may become a specialized tissue- or organ-specific cell, such as the cells of cartilage, muscle, bone, blood or brain. With this extraordinary ability, stem cells are capable of repairing damaged tissue within the body.
Previously, scientists depended on embryonic stem cells for research and study, which was highly controversial. Over recent years, however, another non-controversial source of stem cells, adult stem cells, or somatic stem cells, has generated a great deal of excitement. Scientists have found adult stem cells in many tissue sources, with the most commonly studied sources being bone marrow, adipose (fat cells), umbilical cord cells, and amniotic cells. Stem cell therapy involves concentrating one or more of these stem cells sources and placing these cells at the treatment site in the body to stimulate healing and the regeneration of tissue.
Types of Treatments
There are many ways to perform stem cell therapy, and at Mountain View Pain Center we use evidence-based research to determine which types of treatments would be most appropriate for each individual patient. When stem cells are harvested from the patient’s own body to treat a condition, these cells are known as autologous stem cells. These cells are often derived from bone marrow, fat or blood. When stem cells come from donor tissue, such as umbilical cord blood or amniotic fluid, these cells are known as homologous stem cells.
- Bone Marrow Aspirate (BMA) / Bone Marrow Aspirate Concentrate (BMAC)
Bone marrow stem cells are one of the most well-researched sources of adult stem cells and have high concentrations of hematopoietic and mesenchymal stem cells, which assist in natural healing and regeneration of tissue. For this reason, BMA is considered the gold-standard in stem cell therapy. These cells are harvested from the posterior iliac crest of the patient’s pelvis, in a relatively quick and painless procedure, and then used the same day for treatment. Our clinic uses the newest aspiration technology and image-guided techniques, ensuring patients have the greatest potential for success.
Adipose tissue, or fat cell tissue, has been shown to contain a high quantity of mesenchymal stem cells. Adipose stem cells are harvested from the posterior flank of a patient in a safe and painless lipograft procedure, and then concentrated into an injectable form to be used the same day. Adipose stem cells have been shown to provide excellent treatment outcomes for certain conditions.
Umbilical stem cells are derived from umbilical cord blood or from Wharton’s jelly, a gelatinous substance in the umbilical cord. Both have been shown to contain high quantities of mesenchymal stem cells and growth factors. These stem cells are obtained and processed from donated human tissue from full-term deliveries through standards established by the FDA, without the need for stem cell harvesting. These homologous stem cells are then cryogenically preserved until utilized the day of treatment.
Amniotic stem cells are another homologous stem cell source, like umbilical stem cells. Unlike umbilical stem cells, however, amniotic stem cells do not have a standard amount of stem cells per each milliliter in the treatment vial and research studies using these cells remain scarce. For this reason, while amniotic stem cells remain an option at our practice, we rarely, if ever, recommend their use, as our goal is to maximize the treatment outcomes for patients.
- Platelet-Rich Plasma (PRP)
Platelet-rich plasma, also known as PRP, is a regenerative medicine product that contains growth factors and scaffolding proteins that help with healing various injuries. PRP is obtained through a simple blood draw, after which, the platelets are separated from the other blood cells and concentrated through centrifugation. PRP can be used alone to treat tendon, ligament and muscle injuries, but is commonly combined with stem cells to provide the greatest regenerative potential.
After undergoing a complete evaluation and review of a patient’s x-ray and/or MRI imaging, our physicians will determine if a patient is an appropriate candidate for regenerative therapies and which treatment is most appropriate for their pain. We uniquely offer a complete array of regenerative treatment options for patients and customize each treatment to a patient’s pain condition using evidence-based medicine. Treatments are performed in a single day, and typically take approximately 30-45 minutes to perform. All procedures are performed under imaging-guidance and under sterile conditions, ensuring that procedures are safe, efficient and have minimal, if any, discomfort. Afterwards, patients are recommended to maintain a tailored nutritional plan and participate in a progressive physical therapy program, specific for their condition. This provides the optimal conditions for regeneration and healing of the condition and maximizes successful outcomes for patients. At Mountain View Pain Center, we specialize in comprehensive treatments for patients, and this unique approach to regenerative care has allowed us to see tremendous results for countless patients over the years.